Vistara will review salary cuts in January but has not laid off any of its nearly 4,000 employees, according to the airline’s CEO Leslie Thng.
Domestic airlines industry has been significantly impacted by the coronavirus pandemic and subsequent suspension of local and international flight services. However, Leslie Thng told PTI that there have been no job cuts at the airline in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.
Thng stated that there have been no job cuts at Vistara, and therefore, the staff strength remains the same as earlier – nearly 4,000 employees. He also added that salary cuts will be reviewed in January next year.
"With the intent of protecting all jobs at Vistara, we have had to make the difficult decision of reducing some staff costs by implementing salary cuts. This will continue to be in effect until December 2020 and will be reviewed in January 2021," he said.
Many airlines globally as well as some domestic carriers had to resort to salary cuts as well as layoffs and furloughs in efforts to cut down on expenses due to challenging business conditions as both global and domestic air travel were hit hard.
Scheduled commercial flights were suspended from March 25 to May 24 while scheduled international services continue to remain suspended since March 23. However, select overseas flight services to certain countries under bilateral air bubble agreements as well as cargo and other flights approved by aviation regulator DGCA are operating.
Consequently, in July, Leslie Thng had announced that he will take a 20% salary cut for July-December 2020. The rest of Vistara's senior staff including members of the management have taken a 15% pay cut while those in mid to junior-mid levels will take a 10% pay cut in this period. The airline had also resorted to operating with less than 30% capacity given that the aviation sector is one of the worst-hit by the current pandemic. In April, Vistara had asked a third of its staff to go on leave without pay for a period of up to three days between 15-30 April, in a bid to lower costs while its operations stand grounded. However, Thng’s statement has rekindled some hope of a turnaround in the airline’s situation in the next year.